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So you have this thing you want people to care about. Maybe you made an app. Maybe you want to launch a new product, subscription, or service. It’s really cool. It’s going to help a lot of people.
Right now, it’s a secret. You don’t want to ruin the magic, right? Also, what if someone steals your idea? You decide your strategy is to keep it under wraps until you launch so the magic isn’t ruined and no one steals your idea in the mean time. The problems is, it won’t work like this.
You have two diametrically opposing goals: you want no one to know about this and then you want everyone to know about it.
Also, you want to be able to flip between those modes in an instant. Do you see how the two efforts are completely at odds with each other? It simply doesn’t work like this.
Your Idea Is Worthless
Now that I’ve burst your bubble, let’s get down to business. Your idea is worthless. So what does matter? Execution.
Do you have what it takes? Are you willing to work hard and work late and do what it takes to get the work done? Because that’s the only way this thing is going to matter.
This is where most people fall off. They think they’re special for having an idea. They’re not special. You’re not special. You’re special if you make something and you ship it. You’re even more special if you launch something and people care about it.
So how do you get people to care?
I’m glad you asked. It takes time for people to care and it takes consistency for people to notice things. If you want people to care about things and if you want people to notice things, you have to talk about it consistently. You know what this means? This means you have to start talking about it. You have to start talking about it now. You have to start talking about it every day right now while you’re still worried that other people will steal your idea.
I’ll indulge you. Let’s say people “steal” your idea. Who cares? If you’ve already been working on this and they copy you, they can only ever be a step behind. If you haven’t started working on it, then I definitely mean, “Who cares?” because you have nothing. You have an idea, which is nothing. Ideas are worthless.
Everyone has ideas, then they watch Netflix.
Execution is everything.
If you’re willing to execute, then people copying your idea don’t matter. The battle you face is not people copying your idea, it’s launching to crickets.
Launching to Crickets
This is your challenge. The vast majority of people who launch something will launch to crickets. It’s because they were too precious with their idea. It’s because they were too quiet about their “secret project.”
I don’t care about your secret project. I simply don’t care about it. I can’t yet. Neither can anyone else. You haven’t given us time to care. You haven’t given us information to care. You haven’t given us enough story to care!
It’s your fault.
You had two opposing goals: secrecy and announcements. Making sure no one knew and then attempting to get everyone to care. You fought the wrong battle. People don’t notice announcements they notice consistency.
You want to beat the other guy making the same thing? Talk about it more. Screw your NDA. Ideas are cheap. While you were writing your NDA, I made something and I told people about it every day, and I got them to care. I’m winning the care game.
How do you win the care game?
Imagine the biggest news publication in your industry said they would do a piece on your new thing. How amazing would that be? The biggest source for your target audience, pointing everyone to your landing page. It would be incredible! It would explode your growth and provide a tremendous amount of exposure.
They only have one requirement: they’re going to link to your landing page and it needs to be 100% ready to go as if your product is available. This is what I call Backwards Building.
You make the landing page for your thing as if it exists. I mean, I want you to make it exactly as if this thing was ready to purchase. I want it to speak to me as a customer. I want it to read my mind. I want it to sing the praises of your new thing, tell me what it’s about, who it’s for, and how it will make my life better.
You need to make the press release for your new offering before it’s even available.
This does two things for you:
- It provides a place you can send people to from the promotional content you create leading up to the launch.
- It ensures you build the thing you promised and don’t get off track (eliminate scope creep).
Here’s what will happen. Leading up the to launch, as you’re still building this thing, you tell the story. Tell the story in various mediums. Write blog posts, newsletters, record podcasts, and make videos. Each of these things tells a piece of the story of your new thing and speaks to the person it’s for in a new way.
With every piece of content, you link to the landing page for your product.
They land on the page and the headline immediately speaks to them. It acknowledges their pain and relates to them on a level that no one else ever has.
They scroll down and it’s like you’re reading their mind.
They want this thing.
You’re speaking their language. It is immediately apparent that you’ve done your research because you demonstrate that you intimately understand their struggles and have addressed them in the product you’re offering. This is of course because it’s 100% true. You did do the research.
They continue scrolling towards the bottom. They’re ready to pay. Their credit card is practically coming out of their wallet. Except, instead of a buy button, you have a sign up form. This is by design. After all, you’re still building the thing, remember?
While the other guy is doing what “old you” did (maintain utmost secrecy), you are building a massive email list of perfect candidates. Guess who has the advantage when it comes time to launch?
You can of course continue to engage with these people and tell the story over email, but that is another process for another article.
Meanwhile, you’ve got it in writing on the landing page exactly what this product will be. You cannot deviate from the course because you’ve already set expectations. You’ve made a public commitment and have promised what the end result will be, and what problems it will solve.
This ensures you stay on track. Having a launch date on the landing page will also ensure you launch on time. It gives people a chance to get excited too.
Top 3 Struggles of Launching
What I’ve just laid out for you solves the top 3 struggles of launching something:
- Launching to crickets (nobody cares).
- Ever-expanding product (scope creep).
- Never launching (lack of deadline).
If you’re currently keeping your idea under wraps and working on a “secret project” that you hope people will one day care about, I have a 1-step solution for you to keep your launch from being an absolute train wreck: STOP.
Stop right now and answer this question: do you want this to be a secret or do you want people to care about it? If the former, continue doing what you’re doing because I can promise you it will indeed forever remain a secret.
If you want this to be the biggest launch you’ve ever done and you want people to care about this thing so that their lives can benefit, then you must eschew the secrecy and start the ramp up process now.
It’s time to start talking about it. Yesterday was time to start talking about it. You’re already behind. Start Backwards Building.